A slow day at Hersheypark

LostKause's avatar

One of the great things about moving back to PA last winter is that I am now closer to all the awesome amusement parks the State has to offer, and one of the biggest, most popular parks in these parts is Hersheypark. My little bro JD found out that a teacher he works with had some extra unused field trip tickets for sale, but they had to be used by the end of the month, so we decided to go.

It's just a 2.5 hour trip from home now. We've been going to the park or the last several years and it was a 6 hour drive to pick up JD, and then 2.5 to the park. It's nice to be back.

We arrived at the park at about 10am. The gray skies threatened us with another rainy Hershypark day, but didn't deliver the rain until after we left the park at 10pm. The park was busy enough to be exciting, yet slow enough for the lines to be very short. Because of the short lines, we took our time and went through the park at a slow pace, and opted for front-seat rides on every single coaster we rode.

We made a plan the day before. We would head straight to the back of the park for Laugh Track, and work our way towards the park entrance. This proved to be a great strategy.

Laugh Track had about a 15 to 20 minute wait throughout the day. Fahrenheit also had a short wait, but everything else was pretty much a walk on, which made for a very stress-free day.

Some thoughts:

The Hersheypark App and Free WiFi is awesome! Every park needs something like this. It gives wait times, ride closures, showtimes, a park map with directions to your desired attraction, and more! WiFi hotspots are available in most areas of the park. My iPod Touch was very useful because of this perk. I didn't use the "Find my Car" feature, because I think you need a GPS-enabled device, like an iPhone, but I thought that was an interesting feature. If you are going to Hersheypark, get the app!

Laugh Track is great, for what it is. It wasn't as dark as I expected. The theme and artwork was impressive, and the ride itself is pretty exciting for a smaller family ride.

Wildcat is much smoother than I remember in previous years. The only pothole I felt was at the bottom of the fist drop. I still really like this one.

Lightning Racers was smooth as always. JD semi-professionally races RC cars, so he really got into the racing aspect of the ride.

One thing I re-remembered about Mad Mouse is that the ride makes me laugh uncontrollably. Because of the design of these kinds of rides, I find the lateral forces so ridiculous. I mean, who thought it was a good idea to design a ride to do this, and why is it still popular enough for parks to still build them? Quirky is the word I am searching for to describethis ride. High on life is how a Mad Mouse makes me feel.

The Boardwalk Waterpark was very slow. I looked up at the waterslide lines regularly, and they were maybe ten people deep, at the most. This made me wish that we had planned to do the waterpark this visit. The last time, and only time, we used the waterpark, we got to ride one slide. The wait for a tube was about an hour, and then the wait for the slide was about an hour as well. I love water slides, but not enough to wait two hours for one.

JD got some ice cream at the Turkey Hill Ice Cream Parlor at The Boardwalk, and I got a hot dog and fries at Nathan's. Nathan's was not nearly as good as I remember it, and I have eaten there many times. It was good, but not amazing like before.

Fahrenheit was awesome, as always. I really like this ride. I don’t like it’s long line and poor capacity, but the ride is powerful and exciting. It’s probably my favorite steel ride at the park.

JD never cared for Storm Runner, before this trip. He said that the launch hurt his eyes. This time he came prepared sunglasses and a strap to hold them on his head. It’s probably his favorite now. I love it too. It’s probably my favorite Steel coaster in the park… Or Fahrenheit. lol

Great Bear has an interesting layout. I love the intense helix after the lift, and the curve that drops you into the first big hill is awesome. This ride has an awesome first half, but right around the third inversion, Great Bear loses excitement.

SooperDooperLooper is very old, but it still has it's place in the park. It’s a great family ride. It’s not too intense, and it's a great coaster for younger kids.

Skyrush still sucks, because it’s just way too intense on the airtime hills, but I did notice a few things. At the end of the ride when we were waiting for the train in the station to dispatch, the lap bars released a little, relieving the painful stapling that occurs during the ride. I still felt like the ride was going to break my legs in the airtime hills, and I still disliked how the quick turns make my butt go one way while my torso is going another. This ride could be greatly improved if the 20 MPH lift hill were to be slowed down at the top. I think that it might slow the ride down to its intended speed enough that it wouldn’t try to kill its riders.

I did encounter a most enthusiastic ride host on Skyrush. As the train left the station, he would yell like a drill sergeant,

When I say sky, you say rush! Sky (Rush) Sky (RUSH) Sky (RUSH)!

As we left the ride we made sure to let him know how much we enjoyed his chant.

The newish path that goes under Skyrush is so convenient and a really pretty walk.

We also rode a few rides that we don't normally have interest in. I haven't rode the monorail in at least a decade. It was a relaxing break from all all the Hersheypark hills. Two grown men goofing off on the park’s beautiful Carrousel was one of the great highlights of the day.

After we made it to the front of the park, from our starting point in the back, it was about 4pm. We exited the park and enjoyed Hershey’s Chocolate World for a few hours. We did the goofy ride there, and even though it is apparent that they are brainwashing you into loving Hershey products, it is so much fun. We shopped, and shopped, and ate at the food court there. I had a pizza, and I do not recommend it. Bland, boring, and soggy. I also had some “homemade” macaroni and cheese, and it was really good.

After taking our souvenirs and candy to the car, we went back into the park to re-ride our favorites. It was about 6pm now. We got back to the car around 10-ish. The rain held off all day until we exited the park. After a quick pop stop at Turkey Hill, we began our treturous trip back to Altoona. Heavy downpours, thunder and lightning, and insane road construction made for a very stressful drive.

The light crowds allowed us to take it easy and enjoy the park without feeling the need to run-run-run all day. I’m not the biggest fan of the park, but this was definitely one of the best trips to Hersheypark I have ever had.

Last edited by LostKause,
LostKause's avatar

I wish I could bold certain words to make this easier to read. I keep bolding them, but it does not stick. This was a pain in the butt to post. I give up.

Lord Gonchar's avatar

For what it's worth, there's a bunch of bold words in the post for me.

Last edited by Lord Gonchar,
birdhombre's avatar

LK, are you using Chrome? The bold words show up for me in Safari but not Chrome.

Lord Gonchar's avatar

For what it's worth (again), I'm using Chrome and have the bold words.

I got the bold words too.

LostKause's avatar

OS X 10.9.5, using Chrome, and I see no bold. Safari sees the bold though, so that's a good thing.

My love for Chrome is beginning to wane.

Jeff's avatar

I'm using the same Chrome you are, and I see it.

Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog

Lord Gonchar's avatar

For what it's worth (I just had to), me too.

The problem definitely isn't Chrome alone.

Lord Gonchar's avatar

Lord Gonchar said:

Chrome alone.

ApolloAndy's avatar

I see bold people.

Hobbes: "What's the point of attaching a number to everything you do?"
Calvin: "If your numbers go up, it means you're having more fun."

birdhombre's avatar

Strange, when I read this thread on my work Mac, I see bold. And now that I compare screenshots, there is a very, very slight bolding on my home Mac: bold vs. not so bold.

In both cases I'm using Chrome, and the only real difference in setups is that the bold one is running an older OS. And as I said, even at home it showed up correctly in Safari, so it shouldn't be a difference in font files. Strange.

LostKause's avatar

I wrote it in iCloud Notes (Beta version) online. I copied and pasted it here. When I realized that some of it was missing, I cleared formatting and added the rest of the text. Then I had to do that again, and maybe again after that, when I saw that sections of text were still missing and the bold wasn't showing.

So anyways, Does anyone know why Carrousel is correctly spelled both with and without the extra R?

It's origin is mid 17th century from the French "carrousel" or Italian "carosello", so either is correct. It was originally a term describing equestrian events, like chariot races, that knights would participate in. (Hence the horses and chariots we know on our rides today)

L K what part of PA do you live at now? Being my local park I know how to ride Skyrush to make it a much more enjoyable ride. You have to hold onto the side bars of the restraints and it prevents the thigh crush. It's a great ride when you know that trick. Sometimes you have to ride defensive(much like the way you had to ride Maverick with the old restraints.) Skyrush and Storm Runner are my favorite rides at the park.

LostKause's avatar

I moved back to the Altoona area, near where I grew up.

One of my biggest problems with Skyrush is when it crests the airtime hills, it is either going too fast, or the apex is too tight. The forces create airtime that really hurt. My body wants to go up, but the lap bar is holding me in only at the middle of my upper leg. I feel like it wants to break my legs in that area.

I propose that the ride is flawed in its design, and Intamin didn't expect it to be as forceful as it is.

rollergator's avatar

I (still) propose a restraint with a larger area of contact with the midsection. The Wooden Warrior/Rock'It restraints hit a large area across the thighs, waist, and even stomach. Totally comfy...and Warrior at least is a forceful ride. ;-)

But Skyrush would be fine if it made contact with even a 8-10" piece of thigh/hips. When I rode, it felt more like a blade into my thigh than a plate *against* my thigh.

Lightning Racer....is just plain ridiculously fun.

LostKause's avatar

That's the best word to describe Lightning Racer; FUN! It's not huge, or extreme, or even disorienting. It's just a hoot.

LK, Altoona is a good area. Lakemont and Delgrosso's are fun little parks. You aren't far from Knoebels and can make it to Kennywood or Dorney in a few hours.

We are going to go to Waldameer and Conneut this year. We haven't made it up to the Erie area of PA yet.

Lightning Racer is a lot of fun. It's the one coaster you canride in the middle of the summer without a long wait.

You're right Skyrush's restraints are flawed. I've used gotten used to riding defensively, and really enjoy it, but it would be a great ride if the restraints were comfortable enough that you can put your hands up the whole ride.

I though Laff Trakk was pretty nice for the theming, but the ride lacked the familar intensity of that model. I noticed they added magnetic trim brakes to every block brakes and it had the result of making the ride the tamest Maurer spinning coaster I ever rode. I was expecting something like Crush Coaster at Disney in Paris, but got something really forceless.

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